(photo courtesy Madison.com)

The Ohio State University Men’s Rugby team again had a stellar season as they journeyed off to the Big Ten Championship.

The season, in truth, did not seem like it would play well. But that notion was wrong. The Buckeyes and their Men’s Rugby Program delivered as they often have in the recent years.


On the 10th of November – Sorry for the tardiness – I fell into a funk – not only because I, or all of us, are witnessing our nation slip into buffoonery because of the clown show in D.C. – but also because of the Rugby team losing the Big Ten Title of which they were indeed capable of winning, as well as the state of affairs in football-land isn’t quite kosher.

Anyway, enough of my misery ….. let’s get to the Big Ten Rugby Championship ….

The Badgers of Wisconsin earned the right, as well as the Buckeyes, to meet up for the bragging rights of the Big Ten. The Badgers would score first on a short try to the corner early on: Badgers 5 Buckeyes 0.

Ryan Bradfield would shortly, thereafter, on a long break and an offload to Tim Vanderhoof would score on a plunging try by Mike Matthews. The kick would be no good – and so, it would be five each.

The Buckeyes would run multiple phases on the goal line but Wisconsin forces a knock on. (Damn!)

The Buckeyes on a penalty kick by Baldado, which was good, propelling the lead for the Scarlet and Gray 8-5.

The field conditions advanced to a horror show ….. presenting a muddy and sloppy scene often expected to be seen in an uplifting movie written and acted by Mel Gibson (My goodness! Did I really say that?).

Ben Richards then, for the Buckeyes, marched on a nice push to the goal, scored a try on a “really” earned moment. It pumped it all up into the favor of the Buckeyes at 13-5.

The half then arrived ….

The second half came which showed a disorganized Buckeyes team – being slapped with multiple penalties. The Badgers with a lineout deep in OSU territory snagged a score with a try created by a cross field in downed corners. The kick, no good, the score still in favor of the Buckeyes 13-10.

The Buckeyes would be hit again with multiple penalties. Wisconsin would be presented with an opportunity because of this to kick for points, and wouldn’t you know it would be good. Suddenly it was all even at 13.

The Buckeyes maul it to the Wisconsin five but the Badgers would knock it on.

The Badgers would intercept an errand pass and march it downfield for the try. The kick would, of course, be good. The Badgers now led 20-13.

I could go on and on about other plays, close one’s, and not so close one’s …. But I’d be in hemorrhage mode, thus crashing my creativity more so than the twelve pack waiting for me in the fridge ,,, so I’ll simply concede and end the pain. This would be the final: Badgers 20 Buckeyes 13.

It was a heartbreaker. I have to say. I have been a Rugby fan for a long time now. Living in NYC and not able to find a good mauling, I have warmed up to the Fordham Rams. But I am a Scarlet and Gray zealot. So I stay abreast from a distance. The last few years the Buckeyes have been in the Big Ten Finals, or Championship. And each time they failed the mission. That may be unfair of me to say that – but it’s disappointing. And perhaps tomorrow when I reread this I may edit it. But, I must speak the truth, my feelings. When? Always so close! I want the trophy for the Buckeyes as much as they want it. In no way am I dismissing a fine year … that would equalize me to the orange clown in D.C. I love the Buckeyes and their Men’s Rugby Program. And, when they DO WIN the Big 10n Championship I will be the loudest buffoon in NYC prancing about in my best Scarlet and Gray outfit.